Major water pressure, leakage management system sought in new partnership

An American Water partnership seeks the development of an advanced leakage and pressure management system.

VOORHEES, NJ, May 14, 2013 -- American Water (NYSE: AWK), the nation's largest publicly traded water and wastewater utility company, today announced it is a partner to a $1.8 million, 2-year award from the Israel-U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation along with Steam Control Ltd. for the development of an advanced leakage and pressure management system.

This research project demonstrates the feasibility of installing modifications on existing pressure system controls that could reduce pressure in a system in response to reduced customer demand. International efforts to reduce leakage have confirmed that reducing excessive pressure not only reduces the volume of leaks through pipes but reduces the frequency of pipe failures. The expected outcome of the project will enable average reduction of water leakage significantly.

"Increasing operational efficiency by reducing water waste is a major priority at American Water and for many utilities around the world," said Dr. Mark LeChevallier, Director of Innovation and Environmental Stewardship at American Water." Leakage in public water systems is a common problem, undermining water-resource efficiency and resulting in loss of purified drinking water, wasting the energy and material resources used in abstraction and treatment. This innovation can automatically reduce water pressures under low flow and will result in less water leakage and reduced non-revenue water. We also believe this project will reduce the number of main breaks that occur.”

This is the first BIRD Foundation award for American Water and Steam Control Ltd. This project is part of the company's Innovation Development Process. American Water used its industry-leading position to launch the Innovation Development Process in 2009 to drive innovation and support the development of new products. The program tests new ideas, both from within the company and from business partners, to create greater efficiencies in strategic areas such as water reuse, desalination, wastewater operations and bio-energy.

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